Letter: City seeks out the 'missing' electors

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Sir: Your report of 7 November on the level of under-registration of electors quoted an estimate by the Treasury that only 70 per cent of adults in Westminster are registered to vote, implying that the remaining 30 per cent are eligible to vote and therefore "missing".

The current register stands at 121,104 electors, which, if this implication was correct would mean that we would be missing 52,000 electors. This is simply not realistic, bearing in mind the high proportion of the resident population who are foreign nationals and the number of residential properties that are in business use.

It may be that the 70 per cent figure is the percentage of properties that returned a form for the February 1995 register. The current register is based on information from 86 per cent of the properties canvassed. It is likely that the greater proportion of the missing 14 per cent will have no one eligible to vote so the "missing" electorate is much nearer 5,000 than 52,000.


Electoral Registration Officer

Westminster City Hall

London SW1